Picture copyright Disney

Most parents wouldn’t say they love the movie Frozen – especially not when they’ve been forced to watch it 20 times or more.

But I do love Frozen.

Some people have told me that Elsa is a “bad” character because she (accidentally) curses her sister and exhibits frightening behaviour.

I quite like a show that doesn’t present a passive or “perfect” model of femininity (putting aside Barbie-doll looks). Such models are either unattainable for those who admire it, or compel people to try to conform to.

Elsa’s heart is in the right place and the more she can be herself, the more creative and amazing she becomes – losing her destructive elements.

Why should we have a hero without flaws, or only “acceptable” flaws? Don’t we all feel we have failings we’d rather not share publicly (obviously not me, ha, ha). Isn’t it better to show the dark side and show recovery and growth?

Another comment I’ve heard is that the show is too dark. I suppose the same comment has been made with greater frequency about Harry Potter (I loved the JK Rowling series). Many children come from a range of experiences. Surely showing the dark makes it less powerful and fearful? 

Children grow up with divorce, death of loved ones, anger and arguments within families, a whole range of experiences. Being able to view resilience despite, and in some cases because of difficulties, is something that may have drawn so many girls to enjoy this. The world isn’t always pretty.

For me this movie shows that flawed individuals are capable of improvement and deserve to reach their potential. That’s one thing I hope my daughter grows to understand.

That (in)famous song in Frozen that Elsa sings “Let it go” resonated strongly for me. I had boulders on my shoulders, I had a moderate form of road rage, I even had an argument with an older woman over a carpark before Xmas one year. This incident made me realise I wasn’t the person I wanted to be. I didn’t want to behave in that manner or hurt so much over such inconsequential matters.

I said to myself ‘do you want to get sick over this? Let it go!’ Over time I let go of those small grievances but bigger boulders were harder to let go of. These boulders I carried were: feeling unable to fit in, feeling trapped, trying to live up to societal expectations and struggling to be “successful”. It wasn’t until I finally lost the plot entirely that I felt greater freedom than I had ever experienced before.

Maybe it is only when you lose everything that you are free to be yourself. That was my experience.

When Elsa was singing, you could sometimes hear me belting out the tune with Gracie.

Letting it go for me meant embracing my heart’s desire. For the first time (well, second) in my life I summoned the courage and started writing.

I’m not arguing that Disney productions necessarily provide the best representations of femininity (or masculinity for that matter) out there. But this was a movie that was available to me and I really ‘dig’ it.

Call me simplistic, you’re probably right. I’m definitely more Elsa than Hermoine, more Disney than Descartes.

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